First sentence: "The land tortoise is found from one to five feet in length, from the end of the snout to the extremety of the tail; and from five to eighteen inches across the back."
One of 7 chapbooks issued by Davison as an abridgement of Buffon's "System of natural history," an itself abridged English translation of his "Histoire naturelle, générale et particulière": Davison, 1814; the chapbooks dated by Tattersfield "around 1819."
The woodcuts have been attributed to Thomas Bewick and his workshop by Hugo (in Bewick collector, p. 109-110); Tattersfield claims nothing in the chapbooks to be by Bewick (in Thomas Bewick, v. 2, p. 935) naming as the probable engraver Isaac Nicholson, a former Bewick apprentice
Hugo, T. Bewick collector
Tattersfield, N. Thomas Bewick
Wood, C.A. Vertebrate zoology
Copy in Bourke Coll.: one of 3 titles bound together, in a set of 3 volumes; from vol. 3, bound with: A natural history of fishes, and Day, a pastoral in three parts; binder's spine title: Fishes, Reptiles, Day, 1824. Bound together subsequent to publication
Bourke copy three-quarters bound; marbled paper boards
Date on spine of Blacker Wood copy: 1809
Copy in Bewick Coll.: full bound with gilt fillet border and corner tool, and gilt spine, turn-ins and edges (broken joint); the engravings hand-coloured
Bewick copy with: A natural history of foreign quadrupeds. Alnwick : Printed and sold ... by W. Davison, [ca. 1820]. Bound together subsequent to publication